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NAHT Cymru question local election candidates on plans for future of education

As local elections approach, school leaders’ union NAHT Cymru are pushing council candidates to ensure that education provision remains a high priority, with a campaign calling for voters to ask three key questions of their local candidates.

Laura Doel, Director of NAHT Cymru said: “NAHT is clear in its desire for community-focused leadership, putting education front and centre, having people who will work alongside the profession to help schools thrive.

“We want voters to ask candidates the relevant questions and make sure we get elected officials who will support NAHT Cymru’s fight for fair school funding to provide the education our learners deserve.”

The key questions are:

How are you going to ensure education funding is prioritised in our Local Authority?

While Westminster and Welsh Government determine local budgets, its local councillors who decide how funding is spent within the local area. Across Wales we see huge inconsistencies in the funding allocated to schools through local authorities. Do candidates think this is fair, are they committed to addressing this?

How will you ensure the wellbeing for children and young people is supported in schools by all services?

This cannot be the responsibility of schools alone; schools need support from specialist outside agencies, but that is often very limited. Supporting wellbeing is especially important as we move out of the pandemic. We need our elected officials to fight for this generation of learners.

What is the vision for schools in our local authority?

Councillors are key in planning what education looks like at a local level, for example, the resources available for Welsh schools, the commitment to maintaining small and rural schools or instead to develop larger schools, what other services are available to support the wider education and wellbeing of pupils, such as leisure facilities, community links and libraries.

NAHT Cymru President, Kerina Hanson, said: "Schools are going through the biggest education reform in decades; now more than ever, its important that those people making decisions on our children's future understand the responsibility they have.

"Schools cannot do this alone and we owe it to this generation to ensure that education is and remains a priority for the benefit of us all in Wales."

A video launching the campaign can be found here:  https://www.naht.org.uk/About-Us/NAHT-Cymru/ArtMID/606/ArticleID/1652

First published 28 April 2022